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Rewards in Heaven

Rev. Margaret Minnicks is an ordained Bible teacher. She writes many articles that are Bible lessons.


When a Christian stands before the judgment seat, he is given his rewards according to his faithfulness of work and service to God he has done while here on earth in this life. Rewards differ from person to person.

"Behold, the Lord hath proclaimed unto the end of the world, say to the daughter of Zion, behold, the salvation cometh; behold, his reward is with him, and his work before him." (Isaiah 62:11)

God’s people will be a holy people, a redeemed people, and a people who are no longer isolated and hated, but a people loved and desired. Rewards in heaven are more diverse and fulfilling than anything we can understand here on earth.

Earthly Rewards

There are earthly rewards for God’s servants, but the problem with earthly rewards is that they are temporal and often tied in some sense to the material world. Heavenly rewards may not be recognized at all in human time, but they are worth the wait. Even the smallest and most insignificant gesture on behalf of God’s kingdom is not overlooked by God. That includes picking up paper off the sanctuary floor.

One type of reward is the crown mentioned in 1 Corinthians 9:24-25. That is a victor’s wreath. Unlike the kingly crown on the head, the wreath of actual vines and leaves will be bestowed upon those who were victorious in the competitions of the day. This crown is for those who strive for mastery in all things. It is an incorruptible crown for the faithful.

Sometimes the work people do is thought to be insignificant when they teach Sunday School, sing in the choir, or perform the duties of an usher. In God’s kingdom, no work is insignificant or less valuable than others.

Some rewards on earth are merely pacifiers, but God’s rewards are both full and satisfying. Ephesians 6:8 states that any good thing a believer does will receive a reward from the Lord.

Heavenly Rewards or Crowns

The crown of rejoicing is for witnessing to those about Jesus Christ. It is also referred to as the soul-winner crown because of the joy of being instrumental for getting people saved. Paul alluded to this in 1 Thessalonians 2:19: "For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? are not even ye in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at his coming?"

Every time we meet someone in heaven who is there as a result of our witnessing, we will experience rejoicing. So to the soul-winner goes the crown of rejoicing.

A crown of righteousness is for those who have lived a righteous life while here on earth and wait eagerly for Christ's return. "There is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing" (2 Timothy 4:8).

For those martyrs who have suffered for Christ, there will be the crown of life. This crown is the life promised by Jesus, especially to those victimized by trials for Christ's sake. "Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him" (James 1:12).

There is the crown of glory for pastors, ministers, and teachers who have had the difficult task of overseeing God's people and teaching them to live a godly life. It is often a thankless and tedious responsibility. Nevertheless, there is no greater calling. Those who preach the Word of God will receive the crown of glory (I Peter 5:1-4).

The victor's crown is also known as the incorruptible crown or imperishable crown for those who have gone the extra mile for the kingdom of God (I Corinthians 9:25).

Even though we will receive crowns in heaven for our work on earth, a born-again believer will readily confess that just being in God's presence is reward enough. God has saved us, and he still plans to reward us abundantly.

Crowns in Heaven

Name of CrownReason for the CrownScripture

Crown of Rejoicing

For Soul-winning

Philippians 4:1; 1 Thessalonians 2:19

Crown of Righteousness

For those eagerly awaiting Christ's arrival

2 Timothy 4:8

Crown of Life

For those who have been martyred

James 1:12, Revelation 2:10

Crown of Glory 

For pastors, minister, teachers of God's word 

1 Peter 5:1-4 

Victor's Crown 

For those who go the extra mile

1 Corinthians 9:25 

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